Of Miss Jean Brodie
by critics since its initial
release, the The Prime Of Miss Jean
Brodie is a great classic film about
loyalty and betrayal set in a strictly
school in the 1930s
Maggie Smith is the very different
teacher whose influence is to have
far reaching consequences...
PRIDE COMES BEFORE A FALL and Miss Jean Brodie (the magnificent Maggie
Smith: A Room With A View; Gosford Park) may be in her prime, but she
is heading for a fall that will cost her dearly in The Prime Of Miss Jean
Although the Marcia Blaine School For Girls has a rigid curriculum with strict
rules and regulations, Jean Brodie kicks against the system and secretly introduces
her own style of teaching to explore the mysteries of love, politics and art.
Going against authoritarian headmistress Miss Mackay (superbly played by Celia
Johnson), Jean Brodie tests the boundaries as she urges her pupils to maintain
their youthful exuberance and idealism; thus nurturing an unwavering bond between
herself and her pupils especially her favourites: Sandy (Pamela
Franklin); Jennie (Diane Grayson); Mary McGregor (Jane Carr) and Monica (Shirley
Passionate about painting, Jean instils in her pupils the need to follow to
follow their hearts, describing her love for her former fiancé Hugh who fell
at Flanders Field. Brodie girls are "la crème de la crème" and vastly informed
in subjects irrelevant to the accepted curriculum.
As she becomes their inspiration, filling their heads with romantic and idealistic
notions, her own romantic liaisons are coming under scrutiny. Her desire for
married art teacher Teddy Lloyd (Robert Stephens), with whom she had an affair,
and her regular visits to the home of music teacher Gordon Lowther (Gordon Jackson)
have not passed unnoticed.
Encouraging individuality, Jean is convinced that Jennie will become an artist's
model and that Sandy would make an excellent spy. But her influence over her
pupils spirals out of control, leading to her betrayal when her obsession causes
a terrible tragedy in this classic 1969 film with the wow factor starring the
unsurpassable Maggie Smith.
The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie benefits from a wonderful support cast
that includes: Margo Cunningham as Miss Campbell; Isla Cameron as Miss McKenzie;
Lavinia Lang as Emily Carstairs; Rona Anderson as Miss Lockhart; Antoinette
Biggerstaff as Helen McPhee; Molly Weir as Miss Allison Kerr; Helena Gloag as
Miss Kerr; and Ann Way as Miss Gaunt.
Made on location in Edinburgh and at Pinewood Studios, The Prime Of Miss
Jean Brodie was originally Produced on the stage in Great Britain by Donald
Albery and Produced on Broadway by Robert Whitehead is association with Robert
W Dowling. Original Music Composed by Rod McKuen; Arranged and Conducted by
Arthur Greenslade; Art Director is Brian Herbert; Director of Photography is
Ted Moore BSC; Produced by Robert Fryer; and Directed by Ronald Neame.
Winning an Oscar and a BAFTA for her mesmerising performance Dame Maggie Smith,
one of Britain's best loved actresses, plays the liberated, unconventional and
headstrong teacher in 1930s Edinburgh in the classic drama The Prime Of Miss
Adapted from Muriel Spark's novel and Jay
Presson Allen's stage play, The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie is Directed
by Ronald Neame (The Poseidon Adventure) and comes to DVD for the first
time on 2 August 2010. Catalogue No: AV9779 | RRP: £16.99 | Running Time: 115
Minutes Approximately | Certificate: 12.
Special Features: US Teaser Trailer | US Theatrical Trailer | Muriel
Spark Biography and Bibliography; Director Filmographies | Cast Filmographies.
"The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie... classic 1969 film with the wow factor
starring the unsurpassable Maggie Smith" Maggie
"Smith's performance is a triumph" Variety
"Crème de la crème, indeed" ***** Radio Times